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Replacing a ship’s bow no problem for EBH

Replacing a ship’s bow no problem for EBH

An oil tanker that had its nosecone damaged in a collision left Walvis Bay this week after local ship repair company, Elgin Brown and Hamer (EBH), fit a new bow in two ticks.

The Huascar had to have its bulbous bow repaired and looked no further than the company with the proven track record, and capability, EBH Namibia.

The vessel owners sent an initial enquiry to EBH in 2016 after which a proposal for repairs was submitted. But later it transpired the damage was more extensive than first impressions and EBH had to go for an alternative solution.

A site inspection, coinciding with the tanker’s trading patterns between Togo and Nigeria, was then proposed and undertaken in September 2016; for which EBHN sought the assistance of highly-skilled naval architects, 6Sigma.

“The challenge we faced was that the bow section of the Huascar was constructed of double curved plating. To remove this first and then repair it would have been very time-consuming; and therefore could have cost the owners a significant sum in lost charter fees. In keeping with EBH’s dedication to the very highest standards of client satisfaction, we came up with a superior option,” said Willie Esterhuyse, Commercial and Marketing Manager at EBH Namibia.

The EBH project team then devised a ‘total solution’ repair strategy; which would not only save the vessel owners significantly financially, but also in terms of operational time.

This option featured a reduced project repair time of just 20 days; and an approximately 10% reduction in the overall cost of the repairs.

“This repair strategy was to pre-fabricate the bulbous bow completely before the vessel was dry-docked. With the new section complete and ready for fitting, the Huascar could then be docked at our Namdock 3 Panamax-sized dock, and the damaged bow swopped out for the newly fabricated bow,” Esterhuyse elaborated.

In November 2016, the owners accepted the proposal allowing EBH sufficient time to immediately start sourcing materials and building the new nosecone. The Huascar set sail for Walvis Bay.

“At an overall length of 176 m, breadth of 32.2m and weighing 25,060 tons, the Huascar is the widest and heaviest vessel ever lifted by EBH; and our Namdock 3 Panamax-sized dock really came into its own in accommodating this vessel,” according to Esterhuyse.

EBHN’s rigging team quickly dismounted the damaged bow; as well as the safe and very precise positioning and installation of the new bow.

“We are delighted that the client was extremely pleased with the innovative, fast, cost-effective service that EBH Namibia’s fabrication, propulsion and mechanical teams delivered,” commented Hannes Uys, the CEO of EBH Namibia.

About The Author

SADC Correspondent

SADC correspondents are independent contributors whose work covers regional issues of southern Africa outside the immediate Namibian ambit. Ed.

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia


20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.